Most of the localities in the sixth electoral district have always been Labour leaning.
Of Luqa, Qormi, Siġġiewi and part of Żebbuġ, only Siġġiewi has seen balanced voting between the two major parties, even on a local council level.
It remains to be seen which Labour candidates will benefit from the absence of the biggest name of all from the list – Robert Abela.
He has switched from his usual Qormi stomping ground to contest the fifth district.
His showing in the 2017 election – before he was catapulted to party leader and prime minister – was moderate, with Silvio Schembri winning most first-count votes from Labour supporters, 500 more than Abela.
Roderick Galdes was also elected, making it three for Labour and two for the PN.
Labour secured 13,717 votes from the district in 2017 – 59.4 per cent.
The PN claimed 9,164 votes, or 39.7 per cent of the vote.
A small number of votes, about 200, went to Alternattiva Demokratika, Alleanza Bidla and Moviment Patrijotti Maltin.
Schembri was also elected on the seventh district, so he gave up his seat on the sixth, making way for the controversial Rosianne Cutajar, ex-mayor of Qormi, who made it to parliament through a casual election.
From the PN camp, the elected MPs were Ryan Callus and Clyde Puli. The latter will not be contesting this time around.
What to look out for
On the Labour side, incumbents Schembri, Cutajar and Galdes and Ian Borg are the big names contesting, although Borg only garnered 1,500 first-count votes on this district in the last election, where he was eventually eliminated on the 13th count.
Other names that stand out for Labour include Żebbuġ mayor Malcolm Paul Agius Galea, who recently changed his surname to shoot to the top of the ballot sheet.
He is not the only one to try and gain an electoral advantage – many voters put their no. 1 at the top of the alphabetical list and just work their way down.
Another contender for a seat in parliament could be Katya De Giovanni, a psychologist and daughter of the former Fgura mayor and president of Labour Veterans, Anthony De Giovanni.
He is a government in-house lawyer who made the headlines recently for partially blaming Daphne Caruana Galizia’s son for her assassination.
The PN stands a good chance of electing Callus, Jerome Caruana Cilia, who has a very strong backing in Qormi, or Alessia Psaila Zammit, who is strong in Siġġiewi where she served as mayor before the council switched to Labour.
The main issues
The most pressing concerns for the constituents of this district is the problem of parking, according to surveys. This is certainly so for residents of Qormi and Żebbuġ.
Residents here are also concerned about the huge volume of traffic that flows through their localities at every hour of the day, which they see as causing traffic congestion, creating pollution and degrading the environment in their localities.
Luqa residents also complained about the state of roads.
Siġġiewi residents too see the state of the roads in their locality as the most pressing issue, closely followed by rampant construction and the overall dismal state of the environment, which is also something high on the worry list of the Qormi and Żebbuġ residents.
Sean Apap Meli
Katya De Giovanni
Malcolm Paul Agius Galea
Alessia Psaila Zammit
Jerome Caruana Cilia
Rebecca Rose-Marie Carmen
John Mark Attard